SINGAPORE: An overcrowded electronics shop along Serangoon Road was ordered to close on Monday (Apr 6) under the Infectious Diseases Act, as Singapore fights to contain the spread of COVID-19.
In a news release, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said officers from the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) conducted safe distancing checks on UniverCell Mobile Market at 122 Serangoon Road at about 1pm on Sunday and found it to be "severely overcrowded".
The store lacked lacked proper crowd management controls such as limiting the number of customers in the premises and ensuring a 1m spacing between customers, said MOH.
The store was given verbal warnings but its premises continued to be overcrowded at about 7.15pm later that day, and was issued an advisory letter.
"In view of the lack of crowd management controls and repeated overcrowding at UniverCell Mobile Market, MOH has reason to believe that the conditions on the premises are likely to lead to the outbreak or spread of COVID-19," the ministry said.
UniverCell Mobile Market was ordered to close the premises immediately for a period of 14 days, during which the owners must clean and disinfect the premises.
In addition, the owner must take measures to ensure the abatement of overcrowding or any other conditions that could contribute to the likelihood of the spread of COVID-19.
The store will remain closed after the 14-day period until May 4 inclusive, as part of circuit breaker measures implemented by the multi-ministry task force handling the outbreak.
“MOH will not hesitate to take action against any individual or business that violates the Infectious Diseases Act.
“We urge everyone to observe the safe distancing measures that have been put in place, and to be socially responsible," said the ministry.
Editor's Note: Several amendments have been made to this article after MOH issued a revised press release.